Adventures in Weaving, A Tale of Two Scarves

Tying on WarpNow that I’ve recovered from yet another bout of existential angst, I started rummaging around the studio, aka garage, to see what kind of project might suit my fancy. Sewing? Nope, too much stuff on that table. Knitting? No, I still have three projects I’m avoiding. Spinning? No, that much ankle action would have me limping in no time.

I started eyeing the loom, with that “come hither my love” look. To unearth it from the nether regions, where it was accumulating dust, required moving more that one piece of crap that I’ve yet to deal with. But unearthed it was, and upon eliciting help from the minion husband, it was in it’s new home among the other living room furniture, and ready to do my bidding.

Tencel in purples & turquoiseThe lovely tencel I dyed in the warp painting workshop, was to be my first victim. I’ve been waiting for the weather to warm, so working the the cool fiber would suit the season. The warp length for two scarves made it easy to wrangle, and with one end more turquoise and the other more plum, it would be interesting enough for me to keep plugging along. Plus, with my magical thinking, I just knew I would have these two, and four other tencel scarves completed in the next two weeks, so I could sell them for Mother’s Day presents. I was amped!

Beginning of ScarfI warped up the loom, threw in the turquoise accent part of the warp, fished out the more turquoise weft yarn, and went at it. Now I know I made that sound quick and easy, but the reality was, it still took me a good 6 hours to get it warped and tied on the way I wanted it should be. Of course once I was ready to weave, I discovered two threads that were missed at the beginning of threading, and all the empty heddles were on the other side. So I opted to NOT spend another hour re-threading the entire warp, I was anxious to get weaving. Another thing, our great teacher, Theresa Rusch warned us about tencel, is that it can cut you. Do you think I remembered that little tidbit? No, of course not. Deep into tying on the warp I discovered how raw the side of my ring finger was, thankfully before I started bleeding all over my fresh yarn.

Closeup Now I must say in my defense, this is a couple of firsts for me. This is the first time I’ve woven tencel. It’s also the first time I’ve woven this fine a yarn, both the warp and weft. Do you know how much longer it takes to weave with something that’s the thickness of yarn I make lace scarves out of? A lot. But it’s well worth it. I’ve already taken the first scarf off the loom and it’s made a lovely fabric. After a finishing bath, it’ll make a very nice summer accent scarf.

Second ScarfWith the first scarf was off the loom, setting up the second half was a breeze in comparison to the first. First thing to do is take out a couple of warp threads that had shifted in the warp, and was bugging me during the entire first scarf. See the dark lines in the photo above? Those. I used the two skipped threads from the first scarf (Yay, see they did come in handy!), put them in and I was good to go. Since I liked the pattern on the first scarf, I figured I’d use it for the second one too. This one is much more purple-ly and I’m liking it too.  The weft yarn is finer (think cobweb lace weight) than the other, so it’s taking even longer. I’ve also found my left ankle and knee that I tweaked last January are complaining, so I’m really learning the old adage of “slow and steady will still get you to the finish line.” I hate that, I want it fast and quick. But if I even want to be able to walk anywhere without excruciating pain, I’m taking it slow and steady.

Hopefully, since Mother’s Day is still a few days off, I’ll have this second one done too, and can choose between them which will look better on Mom.

About fiberdazed

Knitter, spinner, weaver, sewer keeps me busy and has me Fiberdazed.
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